Vaporwave: The Microgenre of Today
Floral Shoppe, ▣世界から解放され▣, and the other slowed down mementos from your past.
On 9 December 2011, the world of music was changed. Not by much, but there was an erie difference. A small online record label released Floral Shoppe by electronic artist Macintosh Plus (also known as Vektroid and Ramona Xavier amongst other aliases).
Her album was a mix of slowed down 80’s pop jams, presented in a way much like a scratched CD, repeating itself and bringing a wave of nostalgia to those who have succumbed to it’s spell. Xavier has broke into the pop culture with her song リサフランク420 / 現代のコンピュー (“Lisa Frank 420 / Modern Computer”), used in memes and used to ironically to mock the sadboys subculture.
Other departures from Floral Shoppe include Internet Club’s release ▣世界から解放され▣, which has been deemed the bare bones of vaporwave. A collection of vintage Japanese commercials on loop, the creation of something new from something preexisting is the entire basis for the genre. James Ferraro’s album Far Side Virtual is known as the first true vaporwave album, released in early 2011.
Beyond it’s musical interpretations, vaporwave has become famous for being a mockery of capitalism. Vektroid described her album 札幌コンテンポラリー as “a parody of American hyper-contextualization of e-Asia circa 1995” as well as “a brief glimpse into the new possibilities of international communication.”